Cornhill Community Games
On Friday the 10th of August the village of Banbury in North Oxfordshire held its first Community Games at the Cornhill Centre. The challenge was set: teams could register on the day to complete a series of physical, mental and creative challenges.
The games were opened by the inspirational Frances Gittens and the local fitness group, the Cornhill Keep Fitters. After weeks of rehearsing, the group gave a magnificent performance of their routine using brightly colored ribbons set to Chariots of Fire. This was followed by a performance art piece which explored the theme of ‘Trampolining’ making use of sheets and ragdolls cleverly manoeuvred by the group. Members of The Hill Youth Centre and Cornhill Centre’s Art Class also joined in to form teams made up of all ages and abilities. Showing their support was a strong contingent by Nick Baldwin and Kate’s Katastrophes; a team entered by Kate, the youngest Community Games volunteer at the event who is just 16.
Physical activities were provided by the wonderful Troy from Age UK Oxfordshire including bowls, croquet and kurling with results feeding into a large scoreboard (following official verification from volunteer judges!) Preceding these games a qualifying round where teams contributed to a large Community Canvas displayed in the Cornhill Centre was very popular with the locals. Apparent throughout the day was that everyone regardless of age or ability could participate and contribute, including some of the communities frailer members.
Games organizer Liz Reed had particular praise for the support from the community: “We couldn’t have done this without the support of our wonderful volunteers, tutors and partners, whose spirit and passion for our local community really shone through.”
The day ended with the awards ceremony including prizes and medals for winning teams and certificates for all participants. The games were enjoyed so much that plans for next year’s even bigger event is already underway.